I’m watching This Week on ABC, and Congressman Mike Pence (R-IN) says he voted against taxing the AIG bonus because the measure distracts attention from the Democrats botching things up.
I agree that the Democrats botched things up, since Senator Chris Dodd and Treasury Secretary Geither consciously allowed the bonus to happen. Republicans do well to point that out.
But is playing the blame game an adequate reason to vote against taxing the bonus? That’s what makes no sense to me. Okay, the Democrats made a mistake, but now they’re trying to come up with a way to address it. And the Republican reason for voting against it is that they want the Democrats to keep getting blamed?
I’d rather the Republicans use Rush Limbaugh’s approach: the bonus represents business as usual, so it’s not bad. I’m not sure if I agree with Rush on this, but it’s better than “Don’t tax the benefits because we should be blaming the Democrats rather than doing something about the problem.”
Personally, I bet most of the Republican politicians agree with Rush, but they can’t say that because of public outrage over the bonuses. “Let’s blame the Democrats” sounds better than “the bonuses are okay,” as illogical as that may be.